Claire Heddles

Morning Edition Host/Reporter

From Tucson, Arizona, Claire has a master’s from the University of Southern California’s Annenberg School of Journalism. Most recently, Claire worked at NPR West in Culver City, California, assisting NPR’s western correspondents with research and production. Claire’s own work has been featured nationally on NPR’s All Things Considered. 

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About 300 miles south of Salt Lake City, the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument is at the heart of some of the most remote terrain in the lower 48. Famous for its red rock canyons, arches and fossil beds, the rugged land is punctuated by sites like Death Ridge, Carcass Canyon and Hell's Backbone Road.

Those names staked on the old maps by the region's first white settlers tell you all you need to know about how harsh, brutal and beautiful the land is.

On one side of Farhad Besharati's elegant living room is an inviting sitting area. There's food on the coffee table, surrounded by ornate couches and a fully mirrored wall.

On the other side of the room is Besharati's newly implemented home office. What was once a dining room table now holds a Mac computer, pens and a printer.

This is the location of ATT Vacation, a travel agency catering to Iranian Americans.